Doctor Who News Patrick Troughton as the Doctor's doppelganger Salamander in The Enemy of the World

Published on February 27th, 2014 | by Philip Bates

Philip Morris On Doctor Who Missing Episodes: “Expect the Unexpected”

As the DVD came out on Monday, you’ll no doubt have seen The Web of Fear by now – and isn’t it brilliant?! The man we have to thank for finding both the Great Intelligence-fronted serial and The Enemy of the World, which sees Patrick Troughton shine as both the Doctor and the evil Salamander, is Philip Morris.

Radio Times caught up with the hero of the hour, and discovered that, if it weren’t for Morris’ timely intervention, the film cans might’ve been destroyed forever:

These films were the last survivors of two classic Patrick Troughton tales, which should have been destroyed years ago according to contract… [The Nigerian programme purchaser] informed me he had instructions to burn them. I informed him it was not necessary and the BBC would be delighted to have them back.

Morris continues to search for long-lost gems, not only of Doctor Who, but also The Sky at Night, Dad’s Army, and countless others:

[We're] working in South America, South East Asia, as well as a whole host of other larger and smaller countries. We are also working with lots of private film collectors around the globe transferring lots of old domestic video recordings from old reel-to-reel tapes, Shibaden and Philips 1500/1700 [obsolete videotape formats].

He isn’t, however, quizzed over the ‘omnirumour ‘ – that the two serials found are just a small part of an even greater haul – and in the comments section, writer Patrick Mulkern says he couldn’t see the point in pressing the man for a response to rumours.

The Web of Fear 2

The Doctor, Jamie and Victoria refuse to be drawn into the Omnirumour argument!

Ian Levine, who saved The Daleks for us all to enjoy, is also looking for long-lost episodes again, but is growing increasingly frustrated with the lack of news:

He is so clearly dragging it out and playing with us. He’s playing you all – am I really the only one who can see this ???”

Starburst‘s JR Southall provides an upbeat response, though:

With a project like this, you wouldn’t hand things over and release stories until the search is done, otherwise you might end up releasing a story with an episode missing only to be accused of forcing people to double-dip if that episode turns up subsequently (rush releasing two stories for the anniversary notwithstanding). Likewise, if better copies of things turn up, you save yourself a potentially expensive tricky restoration job by only starting work once all your assets are assembled. It really doesn’t make sense to release anything until the assets are all assembled…

Once that’s over, we should find out whether any more Doctor Who has been found (I’d be surprised if the answer was no) and how much… Let’s face it, if it weren’t for Phil Morris, TIEA, and the Project Africa team who got him on the road in the first place, the prospect of seeing *any* of these episodes would stand very close to nil. We’re not losing anything by waiting, but we might be gaining an awful lot.

I’d just like to add my appreciation of the incredible work done restoring the two serials. I was astonished to see how crisp Web now is. I also just searched for images of the storyline and found a few telesnaps. How amazing it was to think that, for over forty years, that’s one of only a few ways we had to enjoy the Great Intelligence’s dastardly scheme!

Morris concludes:

To the fans, never give up hope. Be patient. People are working very hard in lots of very volatile and dangerous corners of the globe, sometimes paying with their nervous systems, which is a hard thing to give. As always, TIEA are out there. Expect the unexpected.

Read the full interview over at Radio Times!

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About the Author

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When he’s not watching television, reading books ‘n’ Marvel comics, listening to The Killers, and obsessing over script ideas, Philip Bates pretends to be a freelance writer. He enjoys collecting everything.




13 Responses to Philip Morris On Doctor Who Missing Episodes: “Expect the Unexpected”

  1. avatar rickjlundeen says:

    The one comment about waiting on quality— for better versions of something to be found is curious. Say that Marco Polo was found in it’s entirety. But the quality was horrible. Almost too horrible to view? Do they make the best of a bad situation and hope it’s acceptable? Or do they wait and see if they find it again? I wonder if they allot just so much waiting time, because the odds of finding the entire story again…….

  2. avatar Ranger says:

    Ian Levine keeps sounding more and more sour and bitter.

    I got Web on Monday, but I am saving it until Sunday afternoon, where I can curl up in my armchair with my husband and children (not all in the same armchair!)with a nice cup of tea and some chocolates and just wallow in the sheer joy of watching it. Morris is my new hero!

  3. avatar Christine says:

    I got web yesterday, but just like Ranger I’m going to wait until sunday. Probably in the evening, accompanied by a nice glass of red wine. Really looking forward to it!

  4. avatar Francis Cave says:

    I watched mine earlier this week having not bothered with the ITunes release last year.

    Even though the packaging clearly referred to the fact that Ep 3 was a reconstruction and all reviews mentioned the same thing, when I selected that episode to play I was still hoping against hope it was the actual episode.

    Oh well!

  5. avatar Gruff says:

    I was given it on Tuesday, but had to send it back as I believe I was told someone else had pre-ordered it for me at Xmas! It was even in my hand in my house and yet I had to send it back never mind I’m now being given Beneath the Surface instead:)

  6. avatar DonnaM says:

    Got mine on Monday – another who cried off iTunes – and was gobsmacked by the sheer quality of the work that’s been done on it (and of the story itself, naturally; loved it on audio, love it even more now). If episode 3 ever turns up and it’s reissued in full, will I buy it?

    Of course I will!

    As for expecting the unexpected…. well, I’ve now given up expecting anything at all. It seems the surest way of not being driven stark, staring bonkers by the whole “omnirumour” business :-)

  7. avatar rickjlundeen says:

    iTunes is the only real choice for us here in the U.S.. no sign of “Enemy” coming here on DVD anytime soon and the “Web” DVD is a vanilla edition with no animated part 3. Knowing their love of re-releasing some via special editions, I’m just waiting for them to give us a well done complete version.


    • We’re also not getting An Adventure in Space and Time. It’s not being released outside the UK.

  8. avatar Geoff says:

    I don’t know Ian Levine, other than from his appearances of the classic DVDs. I do know he’s done a huge amount of work in finding lost episodes in the past and has saved loads of rarities himself over the years that would no doubt have been lost forever if he hadn’t, but he does seem to be gloriously oblivious to how bonkers he comes across when he writes fevered nonsense like this!

  9. avatar Ian says:

    The wait, however understandable and for good reasons it may be, does seem to be driving people nuts.

  10. avatar drewboynton says:

    Expect the unexpected? …How about all 5 series of Peter Capaldi’s run as the Doctor showing up in some dusty old film cans in South East Asia? ;)

  11. avatar francis cave says:

    So hang on, if we are to “expect the unexpected”, and it seems that a large portion of fandom expects that Philip Morris has found tonnes more Who, that can only mean….

    He’s found nothing else!

    Grrr, I feel a Levine style RANT coming on!!

  12. avatar Howard Railton says:

    It does my Moffat-down-trodden heart good to know there’s hope for lost wonders such as Web of Fear, so that we can all see how Dr Who should be done instead of how Moffat has denigrated the concept of the Great Intelligence, all but losing the concept of it as an amorphous mass spreading its tentacles across the globe in favour of silly men in top hats. Whilst Richard E. Grant always does a convincing baddy, the trouble is that the Whispermen are the poor man’s version in comparison to the imaginative wonder of a consciousness powered control sphere commanding robotic yeti, seeing the original puts the GREAT back into the Intelligence. In those days Who wasn’t a 45 minute flash in the pan, story lines luxurated in having time to deliver entire invasion stories to much more satisfying effect.

    Well done Philip Morris. Would be nice to know if other such wonders still exist.

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